Immediate Access For The Termially Ill Act Re-Introduced
Last week, US representative for the first district, Diana Harshbarger along with Senator Mike Lee, republican from Utah, re-introduced what is called the Immediate Access for the Terminally Ill Act, which would remove the burdensome waiting period for terminally ill patients’ access to their Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) program benefits…or SSDI.
Diana Harshbarger’s office says that Americans who are unable to work due to a terminal illness qualify for SSDI, which provides them with a monthly cash benefit. However, despite past reforms, most patients are required to undergo a five-month waiting period before receiving their benefit- even if they are expected to pass away within that time, resulting in some American receiving no benefits at all prior to their passing. The re-introduced ill would eliminate that waiting period, allowing those suffering from terminal illnesses immediate access to their SSDI benefits, and do so in a fiscally responsible manner. The congresswoman said in a released statement that “vulnerable Americans with grave medical conditions should not be shouldering the burden of Washington Bureaucracy when navigating end-of-life decisions.”
Mike Lee originally introduced the bill in the senate nearly 2 years ago in February of 2022, but it never got out of the finance committee. The group legislation has strong support amongst patient advocacy groups.